Since when is the Bottle is worth more than the wine?
Interview Subject: Count
“I think we can all agree, if somebody has millions of streams and they are popular enough to be a household name they should be able to pay their rent…”
They say we are living the, “Golden Age” of media: endless streams of music, more television then hours in the day, enough books to read in twenty lifetimes. The buzzword for this amazing content, – “free.”
For the consumer, it’s a golden age.
But for, the artists, creators and writers, the golden age has a dark side.
For the past twenty years, today’s interview, Count (just, “Count” nothing else) has been working, “on the other side of the glass.” As as an A-list music producer, he has worked with some of the top names in the industry, from Radiohead to Frank Sinatra, from DJ Shadow to the Rolling Stones, Count knows that great music can come from great producers. The Producer, he posits, turn middling tracks into hit singles, and elevate so-so songs into classics.
But, in the the past five years, with the buzzword, “free”, on everyone’s lips. Count has seen the business models which powered the industry for 50 years uprooted and tossed aside. The economics which allowed emerging artists a chance to claw their way into the middle class, and middle level bands to reach for the gold ring, all but dried up. Count saw his own job, and an entire class of music producers, mixers and engineers, become, first a costly necessarily, then a extravagant luxury, and today, he admits, his job of music producer is nothing more than a, “glorified hobby.”
He isn’t alone. An entire generation of creatives: writers, editors, musicians, artists, just about anyone looking to make a living in the creative fields has been affected. The middle class of artists is vanishing.
So Count, pivoted. He turned from a music producer, to a movie director, and for the past five years has has been documenting the plight of, “middle class” artists for an upcoming documentary. In, “UnSound: How Musicians and Creators Survive in the Age of Free,” he argues, there are still fortunes being made in music, but it’s no longer the creators, rather the distributors: the Pandora’s and Spotify’s of the world who are seeing the benefit.
In the end he laments, “the bottle is worth more then the wine.”
There’s a lot more at, unsoundthemovie.com…